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Getting the most from the Coaches Box

If you are anything like me on a Friday night, you have arrived home with a few beers under your belt, your kids are screaming in your ears, TheBench iPhone App has told you 50 minutes ago that the round is closing soon and so you have 10 minutes to get your team in before the round closes.

What you need is to know how to get the most out of the Coaches Box page on TheBench so your slight inebriation, concentration zapping noise and ticking clock doesn’t make you accidentally play Sandy-pants as a tackler or Stephen Tip-Rat Milne as a Ruckman.  Here are a few quick tips to get you in and out quickly and effectively.

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Sort by Position:

Sort by position is my first point of call when picking a team.  On the coaches box, use the drop-down menu to choose a position to sort your squad.  The squad will be sorted based on previous week averages (or last year if before round 1).

If you are playing in a League with position restrictions, the sorted list will also be filtered to only contain the players eligible for the selected position.

The player averages and total games played are shown for each player so you can get a quick feel for how they are performing.

I normally just go through each position and make sure my top performing players are named on the field.


Player Health:

One thing to keep an eye on is player injuries.  TheBench tries to help you by showing an “heart” icon next to each player who is understood to be either injured or suspended.  Keep in mind though that the health icon is only a guide and will not be 100%, 100% of the time given how often injury and suspension status change.   You will also need to check the team line-ups on the AFL website as described below.


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Quick Stats:

If you want to get some quick stats on a particular player without going to the player profile pages, you can click on the down arrow icon to expand the player tile to show more stats and info.

This is great to do a quick check that their average isn’t boosted by a freak one off performance while their regular performance is actually much, much less.  I have been caught out in the past with a player having a single one off blinder which bolstered their average while never achieving any where near that average again!



It is a good idea to also check the match-ups so you can see who your competitor is playing and to get some projections on what your named team may score (based on previous averages).  It is a really good way to get a quick feel for your teams strengths and weaknesses and make any minor adjustments.


Screen Shot 2014-03-17 at 2.58.55 pmSquad Performance:

If you want to get a more detailed view of your squads performance, there is a set of handy icons at the top of the player list.  The first icon links your through to the Squad Performance page (which is also available on the Squad page).

The Squad Performance Page lists a full set of scores and stats for each player for a given round.  You can quickly check how a player is preferring, flicking between different rounds as needed to see how they played.  This page also gives you information about bench rotations and the positions to selected each player in your weekly teams.


Squad Compare:

Another handy link from in the set of icons above the player list on the Coaches Box is to the Squad Compare page.  The Squad Compare page gives you a round by round view of all your squads performance by score.  If you don’t have position restrictions enabled, this page also lets you select different positions to compare.

The players are sorted automatically by their overall average performance so you can quickly see who is hot and who is not.


Check the Names Teams on the AFL site:

The final thing I do is do a quick check of who is names in the team on the AFL site.   The teams are normally posted around 6pm on a Friday for a Friday night game round kick-off.   The teams can normally be found here:

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Ben is founder of TheBench. Famous for being relegated two years in a row in his League on TheBench so perhaps more capable in running the site than running his team.

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